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When Do Creditors Update My Credit Report?

When Do Creditors Update My Credit Report?

Many consumers, once they start getting their free annual credit report, may wonder when the information which appears actually gets added. All information on a credit report is submitted by creditors whom consumers have existing relationships with such as an outstanding mortgage or auto loan. Many lenders follow a specific schedule of when payment and other data is provided to the three major credit reporting agencies but that may not always be the case. It depends both on the type of information being updated and the company reporting the data.

How Updates Work

Creditors like a mortgage company or credit card issuer contact Equifax, TransUnion and Experian when new information is available to be included in an individual consumer's credit report. Credit reports contain a list of revolving lines of credit, installment loans, credit inquiries, negative accounts and personal information. Legal judgment resulting from lawsuits and bankruptcies also appear on a credit report. While the same information should be applied consistently across each credit agency that is not always the case. Any missing or inaccurate information will need to be corrected or updated by the consumer as necessary.

New Lines of Credit

When a new line of credit is opened by a consumer, basic information such as the credit card issuer, credit limit, type of account and payment history are initially created even if there is very little other data. Most credit reports are updated with new account information within 30 days. More importantly, as the consumer is looking to obtain new credit it may generate multiple hard credit inquiries which can have an adverse effect on the corresponding credit score. Too may inquiries in too short a time may raise a red flag for existing or potential lenders.

Pre-Existing Credit

Once an installment loan or revolving type of credit account appear on a credit report, it is then normally updated monthly by the lender. The most important piece of information, which is also the largest percentage of calculating a credit score, is payment history. The lender will also provide the current outstanding balance which can be compared against the total available credit. This is then used to calculate the debt utilization ratio. Given that these two pieces of information make up 65% of a credit score it is important to make sure they are accurate and updated in a timely fashion. If you are paying off excessive debt by implementing various credit repair strategies then expect a delay of at least one to two months as the credit report is updated.

Delinquent Accounts

The status of delinquent accounts is updated almost immediately on a credit report. As soon as a delinquent account hits 30 days past due up to 180 days past due other reporting events will occur. While this may seem like a monthly calendar schedule, it will actually update per the individual situation. Legal action, partial payments, charge-offs and third-party collection agency involvement will appear on a credit report as they happen. A legal judgment, resulting from a creditor suing a borrower, will also appear within a few days of a decision being rendered which may not adhere to the monthly schedule. In the event of a bankruptcy, it will appear in the judgment section of a credit report within a day or two as well as individual creditors updating their information to reflect the fact there is now a zero balance due to the unsecured nature of the account.

Personal Information

Personal information on a credit report is updated as new credit is applied for and approved like buying a car, purchasing a home or getting an in-store credit card. Since application forms filled out by consumers may be difficult to read resulting in this being one of the most common reason for inaccuracies appearing on credit reports. Each of the major credit reporting agencies provide online forms where consumers can correct any inaccurate information at which point the agencies have 30 days to address the issue and inform the consumer of what will happen to the credit report.

Image by: Peter Nederlof